Sept 20, 2006
Land Rights Network
American Land Rights Association
PO Box 400, Battle Ground, WA 98604
(360) 687-3087 - Fax: (360) 687-2973
Legislative Office: 507 Seward Square SE -
Washington, DC 20003
email@example.com -- (202) 329-3574
Bush Administration Removing
Recreation From Forests
Historic CCC (Civilian
Conservation Corps) Camp To Be Burned By Forest
Service - families to be ejected
Urgent Action Required
Forest Service Permittees Face Removal
Bush Administration Policy has the Forest Service
getting rid of "exclusive use" throughout the
National Forest System.
Family recreation is under attack. Permit cabin
use is being subtly undermined.
*****See Action Items Below.
Sound familiar? The Forest Service wants to
remove people from the forests. They say they
want public use but really they want no use.
The Bush Administration is continuing the
anti-people recreation policies of the Clinton
Here is one current example:
The Forest Service has arbitrarily decided that
the old and historic buildings of the Smokey Creek
CCC Camp site are no longer serviceable and is
planning to burn the former CCC camp to the
ground. This old and historic CCC camp is
located in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest in
Southwest Washington State, North of the Columbia
Smokey Creek CCC Camp is leased to the Mountain
View Recreation Club that has used and maintained
the camp for 47 years. A lot of time, care, sweat
and labor has gone into making this camp a
wonderful family experience.
Part of the Club's permit with the Forest Service
requires that that camp be made available to the
public. So the public also gains from private
initiative and investment.
The Forest Service has given a deadline of October
1st to the camp users to vacate the camp.
Sometime after that date burning will eliminate
the camp from any possible future use. It will
just become largely unused forest with no direct
How does the public benefit by burning down this
Is this why Bush supporters voted for him?
This is part of a larger nationwide Forest Service
policy to remove what they call "exclusive use" of
not just Smokey Creek, but many other camps and
recreation sites across the country. This
anti-recreation policy threatens tens of thousands
of cabin permittees, recreation permittees and
permittees of other types of uses in Forest
Service areas nationwide.
A similar attempt by the Bureau of Reclamation to
eliminate "exclusive use" from Lake Berryessa in
California was greatly modified last year after
readers of our e-mails raised a hue and cry
across the country. Your letters, testimony and
phone calls to the Bureau of Reclamation and your
Congressman and Senators caused the Bush
Administration to re-evaluate their position. It
was not by any means a perfect solution but it
helped keep the lake open. You can change the
Forest Service position on Smokey Creek by making
The Mountain View Recreation Club has done a
terrific job of taking care of the camp over 47
years according to letters from the Forest
Fifty families participate in this club along with
many of their friends and relatives. The emphasis
is on camping and horseback trail riding. It is a
wonderful place for kids. Many thousands of use
days have occurred that would not have happened if
the camp did not exist. Those use day's will all
disappear if the Forest Service gets its way and
removes the camp.
By using the code word "exclusive use" the Forest
Service tries to hide their real agenda of
eliminating any use. It is the tragedy of the
commons revisited. By eliminating people who
place a value on taking care of the resource, the
agency supposedly makes it available to all the
general public. By not being specifically
involved in a parcel of land, the public does not
place the care or invest time in the land. The
real result is that nobody uses the area and the
public and the land are the losers.
With the people who care about Smokey Creek
eliminated, the public is gradually eliminated.
By its permit, the camp already must be available
to other groups. Thus the general public benefits
from private stewardship and the forest benefits
because real people take responsibility for
managing and caring for the forest. This saves
the taxpayer money in the long run and enhances
family recreation. It is sweat equity and family
involvement at its best.
You can help save Smokey Creek.
-----1. Call and fax Secretary of Agriculture,
Michael O. Johanns. Call (202) 720-3631. Fax:
(202) 720-2166. E-mail:
-----2. Call or fax Mark Rey, Under Secretary of
Agriculture for Natural Resources and Environment.
He is in charge of the Forest Service. His phone
number is (202) 720-7173. The fax is: (202)
firstname.lastname@example.org. The question for him is
why the Bush Administration is supporting the
removal of recreation uses from our Federal
lands. This is not consistent with our
understanding of Bush Administration policy. It
is certainly not why people voted for President
The Agriculture Department must be deluged with
-----3. Call, fax and e-mail Senator Maria
Cantwell (D-WA). Senator Cantwell is up for
re-election. Ask her to show her support for
family recreation and access to the forests by
stopping the closure and burning of Smokey Creek.
Call her at (202) 224-3441. Her fax is (202)
228-0514. Send her a message at
or go to
-----4. Call, fax or e-mail both your Senators
about this terrible Forest Service "exclusive use
policy." Any Senator may be called (202)
----5. Call, fax and e-mail Congressman Doc
Hastings (R-WA). Smokey Creek is in his
district. He's been working hard to save Smokey
Creek and needs your letters of support. He has
asked for a 60 day extension on the permit so
there is more time to consider alternatives to
burning down the camp. You can call (202)
225-2816. His fax number is (202) 225-3251. The
staff person working hard on this issue is Martin
-----6. Call, fax and e-mail your own Congressman
urging him to support Rep. Hastings and save
Smokey Creek. Any Congressman may be called at
(202) 225-3121. Tell them to ask the Forest
Service to extend the Smokey Creek CCC Camp
permit. Ask for their fax and e-mail when you
Ask your Congressman to request that the Forest
Service extend the Smokey Creek permit. Ask him
or her not to let the FS burn down the historic
Smokey Creek CCC Camp. Help stop the huge
nationwide plan by the Forest Service to get rid
of what they call "exclusive use" in all National
Forests. This plan will affect your local forests
Why should you bother to call or send a fax or
e-mail about an issue that may be remote to you?
Because the fight to continue special use permits
and recreation access to our Federal lands is the
fight of every one who cares about family
recreation in the forests.
Everyone who shares these concerns of losing
recreation access should fight back. Those who
are saved will be there to fight for you when you
are under attack. It is a team game. If you
don't play it that way, you are certain to lose
your access over time. The Forest Service will
divide and conquer you.
As Benjamin Franklin said, "If we don't all hang
together, we will most assuredly hang separately."
Call every day this week and next. The Agriculture
Department phones must ring off the hook. The
Bush Administration must be held accountable for
removing recreation from our forests and throwing
You can make a difference by making your calls and
getting others to do the same. Call your friends
This is your chance to really make a difference.
The Bush Administration appears to be afraid to
stand up to Forest Service bureaucrats who have a
bias to get rid of users of the forest. This is
cultural cleansing. They lock them out.
Please forward this message as widely as you can.
Time is critical. We can win together if you make
your calls. Thank you